But while most fans were satisfied by the Battle of Winterfell’s ending, others were mystified by the seemingly minor role Jon Snow played.
Despite being by now a veteran of many battles, Jon was far from commanding during the conflict, falling off his dragon and then charging towards the Night King on foot.
Jon ended the Battle of Winterfell facing off against Viserion, one of Daenerys Targaryen’s dragons that had last season been killed and then brought back as a zombie dragon by the Night King.
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Raising his sword and yelling at the creature, Jon’s decision to face off against a white walker dragon spouting ice was mocked by viewers who labelled his decision foolish and bizarre for someone who was supposedly one of the battle’s commanders.
— Erik Hellman ☕ (@ErikHellman) May 1, 2019
— Cheyenne Gates (@thecheynanigans) April 29, 2019
Jon Snow is a terrible commander: charging the enemy all by himself like Don Quixote at the Battle of the Bastards; getting surrounded in the Battle Beyond the Wall; floating ineffectually above his army like Tinker Bell at Winterfell; & every time being rescued by a clever woman
— Scheherazade_II (@Scheherazade_II) May 1, 2019
I feel like with all that happened we are overlooking that Jon Snow’s last big idea was to shout at the zombie dragon REAL LOUD pic.twitter.com/7ViYFDZYKz
— Alex Konrad (@alexrkonrad) April 29, 2019
But Jon’s actions may have been more strategic than viewers first thought, with a convincing theory emerging on Reddit that the new Targaryen heir provided a much-needed distraction for Arya.
“Jon screamed at the undead dragon to distract it so Arya can run past and kill the Night King,” Reddit user u/Applesoapp wrote.
“The undead dragon was protecting the entrance to the Godswood. Watch it again, you can actually hear him scream ‘GOOOOO — GO — GO’. Ten seconds later … you can see the hair of a White Walker flying up when Arya sprints past the group of White Walkers. Jon once again was ready to sacrifice himself to kill the Night King.”
If correct, Jon’s actions explain how Arya was able to suddenly appear in the Godswood after having last been seen in the Winterfell castle grounds, surrounded by white walkers.
It also makes a lot more sense that Jon was yelling to distract the zombie dragon, rather than trying to intimidate the creature, which would otherwise be a pretty foolish endeavour for the seasoned fighter.
But the Reddit theory got a mixed reception on Twitter, with some fans arguing it was too reaching and diminished Arya’s role.
Jon Snow did not shout ‘goo go go’ at the dragon, baba was just fed up and wanted to test his generational fireproof skin. Stop trying to force explanations.
— Temitope John (@mr_jeggson) May 2, 2019
Everytime a woman does something heroic people are so quick to call her a Mary Sue. So Arya Stark, someone who has been training 7 seasons to kill DEATH, is now one but Jon Snow survives The Battle Of The Bastards and Beyond the Wall the way he did and no one says a thing. 🙄🙄
— Days Of Future Pasta. (@ThePhoenext) April 30, 2019
Lol. All these #gameofthromes theories that Jon Snow got in front of the dragon cause he ‘was in on Arya’s plan and was helping her get past’ YOU CAN’T HANDLE A WOMAN DOING SOMETHING BADASS EVEN IN A FANTASY WORLD. DAMN!!
— Tali (@teamtarry) May 1, 2019
While the show’s cast are yet to comment on the theory, Kit Harrington, who plays Jon previously told Entertainment Weekly he had been surprised to learn it was Arya who would kill the Night King.
“I thought it was gonna be me!” Harington said. “But I like it. It gives Arya’s training a purpose to have an end goal. It’s much better how she does it, the way she does it.
“I think it will frustrate some in the audience that Jon’s hunting the Night King, and you’re expecting this epic fight and it never happens — that’s kind of Thrones.
“But it’s the right thing for the characters. There’s also something about it not being the person you expect. The young lady sticks it to the man.”